Taiwan Warns Off Intruding Chinese Aircraft for Fourth Time in 9 Days

June 17, 2020 Updated: June 17, 2020

TAIPEI—Taiwan jets on Wednesday again had to warn off Chinese air force aircraft that approached the island, Taiwan’s military said, the fourth such encounter in nine days as China steps up its activity near the island.

The Chinese J-10, a fighter plane, and Y-8, a propeller aircraft often used for surveillance missions, entered Taiwan’s air defense identification zone around midday (0400GMT) to the southwest of the island, Taiwan’s air force said.

Patrolling Taiwanese fighters gave a verbal warning to the Chinese aircraft to leave, whereupon they “immediately left” the air defense identification zone, the air force said in a brief statement.

“At present the situation is normal,” it added, without giving further details.

Since June 9, China’s air force has flown at least three other similar missions, and were each time chased off by Taiwanese jets, according to Taiwan’s military.

Epoch Times Photo
An F-16V fighter jet lands on the freeway in Changhua county, central Taiwan, during the 35th Han Kuang drill on May 28, 2019. (Sam Yeh/AFP/Getty Images)

Taiwan has complained that China, which claims the democratic island as its own, has stepped up military activities in recent months, menacing Taiwan even as the world deals with the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus pandemic.

China has not commented publicly on the recent Chinese air force activity near Taiwan. Beijing routinely says such exercises are nothing unusual and are designed to show the country’s determination to defend its sovereignty.

China has never renounced the use of force to bring Taiwan under its control. One of China’s most senior generals last month said China would attack if there was no other way of stopping Taiwan becoming independent.

China is deeply suspicious of Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen, whom it accuses of being a separatist intent on declaring formal independence. Tsai says Taiwan is already an independent country called the Republic of China, its official name.

By Ben Blanchard

Epoch Times staff contributed to this report.